[Editor’s Note: With the regular season underway, our Cubs correspondent finally got around to writing this up. It is pretty mean and surprisingly belligerent, as to be expected from the self-described “best fans in baseball.” Rivalries and cross-town pettiness aside, The 35th Street Review looks forward to another terrible season by, of, and for Chicago’s minor league baseball team.]
You might have noticed this Cubs preview wasn’t posted until after the season started, but I think it’s important to look at just what would have transpired between the offseason, which was just two days ago, and right now, which is how long it took the Cubs to reach a level of unfiltered suckitude beyond even a remotely acceptable level.
You might also have figured out by now I am a Cub fan. This will need some explaining.
The editor/writer/web-guy/blogg-o/whatever-you-call-it of this site, who is kind of jerk when it comes to things like my baseball-related pain, asked what he, as a Sox fan and by extension a general ignoramus about things related to matters other than where to get a replacement water pump for an ’82 Trans Am and the going rate for a
six-pack case of Stroh’s and a bottle of Night Train, needed to know about “what’s it like being a Cub fan right now,” or whatever kind of hippie crap they teach you to ask at art school these days, and after reading my 9,487,303-word response and not understanding many of the terms used therein (“crowds,” “sunshine,” “fun,” “life on the outside” and what-have-you), decided to hand me the microphone instead. So.
I was going to write up all kinds of reason for optimism this year, especially now that Carlos Zambrano has been traded to the Mets and Alfonso Soriano got sent to Peoria, but then I remembered neither of those things actually happened. Then I stabbed myself in the face to feel a new kind of pain. I can happily report it worked.
Then I was going to take a serious look at the competition, and while I did this Carlos Zambrano gave up six runs. During my lunch hour. That sound you Sox fans heard, assuming you didn’t have your Very Best of Dokken
records tapes turned up too loud, was the sound of Cub fans welcoming back that old sinking feeling. Usually this happens much later in the season, and it’s much quieter since Chad and Trixie are safely back at John Barleycorn doing Diesel Bombs, or whatever the kids are mixing with their well vodka these days, and the rest of us who should know better by now all knew it was going to happen. But this year will be different! No more heartbreak! No more waiting for it to be over, because it’s already over!! Can you see this is killing me?!?
Also, there are already at least four Cubs players I wish could contract something incurable. Not literally, but you know, at least the kind of disease where they go ruin someone else’s year instead of mine. Derrek Lee, I’d add, is not one of them. I actually really like Derrek Lee, and I hope the Cubs re-sign him before he runs off and wins a World Series with the Diamondbacks. The rest of you jerks can go fall from a high place. The Bears got Julius Peppers, by the way. Five months to kickoff. Can’t wait.
So anyway, to answer your question, since you obviously worked so hard to get your job as editor of this site and have honed your journalistic/investigative skills through years of honest, well-researched sports reporting coupled with thought-provoking interviews about subjects that actually matter: it feels awful. It feels like having to go to the DMV every weekday, but only when it’s nice out. It feels like having an ulcer in my brain. It feels like someone running over me with a car that has steak knives protruding from the tires. Probably an ’82 Trans Am with a Sox sticker on the back, because that’s just the way things go when you root for the Cubs: first your best pitcher gets shelled, and then someone hits you with a car, then you lay there in pain wondering when this guy forgot you’re not supposed to throw low-speed fastballs over the middle of the plate, which I think my dog could do a better job of, except he isn’t old enough to punch out a catcher and, no matter how hard I try to teach him, simply refuses to point to the sky in celebration before and after dropping fresh turds all over the field.
So how about those Braves, huh? Eh? Meh.
C. David Kearney is a lifelong Cubs fan from the Chicago area. If he owned an Alfonso Soriano jersey, he would put it on and then burn it.